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November, 2016

Convention Report

Ollie Seay, Ph.D., Texas State University
AAIDD Texas Chapter Convention Committee Chair

We’ve done it again!  Had a fabulous convention, that is!  San Antonio is always a fun place to visit, but it’s even better when you can get in some educational and networking activities.  This year, we had a total of 219 in attendance for the full convention, and 29 attendees at our Pre-Convention Workshops on Ethics and Aging.  Our keynote speaker, Archer Hadley, stole the show and offered great inspiration to all in attendance with his genuineness, heartfelt dedication, and humor.  There were 32 breakout sessions that offered a broad range of topics of interest including person centered approaches, behavioral interventions, billing issues, forensic services, historical issues, cultural competency, and autism to name but a few.  There was a panel of state leaders that helped inform us of upcoming issues.  We were happy to see many consumers and families attending through sponsorship of the Texas Council on Developmental Disabilities stipends.


If you wandered into the exhibit hall, you saw that we had 9 exhibitors, some of which were new to us.  At, the awards luncheon, we recognized the people below:

  • President’s Award – Esperanza Bryan

  • Helen G. FitzSimmons Leadership Award – Lisa Shelby

  • Knowledge Award for Excellence in Education or Research – David Seaton

  • Support Award for Excellence in the Provision of Direct Supports – The Patterson Family

  • Empowerment Award for Excellence in Promotion of Self-Advocacy – Archer Hadley  

  • Student Award for Excellence in Knowledge, Support or Empowerment – Bobbi Hutson


I would like to personally thank the AAIDD Texas Chapter Convention Committee for all their hard work in making this convention a success.  They are the heart and soul of our organization.  Their names are listed below.  Our organization would not work without our Event Coordinator, Pat Holder, and I want to especially let her know how appreciated she is.  I further want to recognize our 16 sponsors who helped us accomplish our goals for the convention.  Finally, I want to thank our attendees for their interest and support of AAIDD Texas Chapter.


I look forward to another fine convention next year in Houston!  See you there!

Ollie, Seay, Ph.D., Chair


Texas State University – San Marcos


Eva Aguirre 

Silent Auction/Exhibitors/Sponsors

The Center 


Connie Cisneros, Chair

Chair, Local Arrangements/


Tropical Texas Behavioral Health


Margo Childs

Awards/Nominations, Consumer Stipends/

Silent Auction/Exhibitors/Sponsors

MHMRA of Harris County


Pat Craig, Ph.D.

Chair, Consumer Stipends


Jermaine East


MHMRA of Brazos Valley


Steve Fitzner


Spindletop Center


Austin Hubbard

Consumer Stipends

Center for Life Resources

Andy Griffin, Ph.D.



Charlotte Kimmel, Ph.D.

Program/Local Arrangements

Cheryl Petty

Consumer Stipends/Silent Auction


Melissa Rasco

Chair, Silent Auction/Local Arrangements



Bernadette Richardson

Local Arrangements/Silent Auction

Kenmar Residential Services 


Lisa Shelby

Program/Consumer Stipends

Austin Travis County Integral Care


Dion White

Chair, Local Arrangements

Center for Life Resources


Melissa Whitworth

Local Arrangements

Bluebonnet Trails Community Services 


Debbie Youngblood

Chair, Exhibitors/Sponsors

Daybreak Community Services

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